The death toll for migrants illegally crossing into Texas-based border sectors continues to mount as human smugglers push their “cargo” into exceedingly dangerous conditions. As the number of deaths rises, temperatures along most of the Texas-Mexico border are expected to exceed 100 degrees this week.
“Migrants are not prepared for what they will face when smugglers move them beyond the border into Texas,” Brooks County Sheriff Benny Martinez told Breitbart Texas in a recent interview. In this county located more than 80 miles inland from the Mexican border, Martinez’s deputies recovered the bodies or skeletal remains of at least 40 migrants — exceeding last year’s total of 34 deaths.
“Between the heat, lack of water, and our inhospitable terrain, marching through these ranches surrounding the Falfurrias Border Patrol Checkpoint can be deadly,” the sheriff explained. “If a migrant becomes dehydrated, overheated, twists and ankle or knee, gets bit by a rattlesnake, or for any other reason cannot keep up, these human smugglers will leave them behind to die.”
During Fiscal Year 2021, Border Patrol agents found nearly 150 deceased migrants in the five Texas-based sectors as of the end of May. With four months remaining in this fiscal year, the number of migrant deaths in Texas compares to 172 for all of last year. Deaths in the Del Rio and Big Bend sectors so far this year have already exceeded their total for Fiscal Year 2020.
Compounding the dangers already present along the border, temperatures along most of the Texas-Mexico border are expected to exceed 100 degrees, according to the National Weather Service.
“CBP’s message for anyone who is thinking of entering the United States illegally along the Southern border is simple: don’t do it,” a CBP spokesperson told Breitbart Texas in response to an email inquiry. “When migrants cross the border illegally, they put their lives in peril. The terrain along the border is extreme, the summer heat is severe, and the miles of desert migrants must hike after crossing the border in many areas are unforgiving.”
“Although CBP does everything it can to locate and rescue individuals who are lost or distressed, the bottom line is this: there are thousands of square miles of mostly desert wilderness that extend immediately north of the border in our area of responsibility,” the spokesman continued. “People who made the decision to make the dangerous journey into this territory have died of dehydration, starvation, and heatstroke despite CBP’s best efforts to locate them.”
In addition to migrants marching through ranches after crossing the border, human smugglers also risk the lives of their human cargo by packing them into the cargo area of box trucks, the trunks of passenger vehicles, and the rear of tractor-trailers. Temperatures inside these conveyances can exceed 120 degrees and air circulation is limited.
“Individuals who cross illegally into the United States through the desert risk facing difficult terrain, unpredictable weather, dangerous wildlife, and abandonment by callous smugglers,” the CBP spokesperson said. “After crossing the border, smugglers often pack as many migrants as they can into locked houses with little to no sunlight, poor ventilation, and unsanitary conditions, making the houses a breeding ground for contagious diseases.”
“No one should believe smugglers or others claiming the borders are open,” the spokesperson concluded. “The borders are not open and people should not make the dangerous journey; individuals and families are subject to border restrictions, including expulsion.”
The number of migrant deaths along the entire U.S.-Mexico border through the end of May stands at 203 — just 37 short of the 250 known deaths for all of Fiscal Year 2020.